Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Serendipitous Side Trip to the WI Stolpes

Rachel and David had invited us to come up to Milwaukee for a visit while we were in Illinois, but we did not make a definite decision until we were in Illinois and saw that Mom could handle a few shorter visits better than longer one. This turned out to be an unexpected and happy surprise for our trip.

 Rachel and David, Sam (10) and Elizabeth (5) had just returned home after their own northern trip. First they went to see Candy’s Dad in Minneapolis. This was Great Grandpa Miller’s first chance to meet Elizabeth. He told us by phone how much he enjoyed her lively, friendly personality. He also told us how impressed he was with Sam’s maturity. By having them debrief their visit with Grandpa Miller and talking to him by phone ourselves, we felt we connected the dots with the whole Midwest branch of our family.

Grandpa Kent entertains Elizabeth and Jenna
 They also went to Ashland at the northern tip of Wisconsin to visit friends from their Milwaukee church who have moved up into the north woods and to enjoy climbing around on the many waterfalls of that area.

After visiting with Mom on Saturday morning we headed to the South Shore WMCA in Cudahy, Wisconsin where Sam had a swim meet. He started the opening medley relay with the back stroke and opened up such a lead the other teams had no way to catch up. He swam well in a couple of other events as well.

That evening we all went to Rachel’s parents to celebrate her birthday (which was actually on Sunday, April 15 – tax day). Her Mom made a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting covered with chocolate chips. Get the idea?! The top was surrounded with yellow “Peeps”® (yes you read that right) so it looked like a sunflower. Such fun to watch Elizabeth and her “twin” cousin Jenna (Rachel’s brother Nigel’s daughter)!

At Rachel and David’s we got to see their wonderfully remodeled kitchen, which features the sun painting I did in our first apartment 43 years ago. It fits right in with the d├ęcor. Now that it is much more spacious we enjoyed not only eating there but also playing games together.

Rachel and David are active (and in leadership) with Milwaukee Mennonite Church, and we enjoyed worshipping with them on Sunday afternoon. They meet at 4:00 pm in a Lutheran Church’s building. We’ve come a long way in church unity since the 16th century!

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